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Results: 1 - 15 of 228
View Kevin Waugh Profile
moved for leave to introduce Bill C-218, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (sports betting).
He said: Mr. Speaker, it is a great privilege to rise in the House this morning to introduce the safe and regulated sports betting act.
I have gotten great support from across the House. I would like to thank the member for Windsor West in particular for his assistance with this legislation and for the seconding of the bill here this morning.
There are others in our caucus who have given great support, such as the members for Essex, Niagara Falls and Calgary Shepard, and I would like to thank them.
This is a historic moment. This is the third time this bill has come to the House. As members know, it passed in 2015 but got stopped in the Senate. Last time, in the 42nd Parliament, it did not make it out. This is third time lucky, as we will join forces with everyone in the House to see if we can move this bill forward.
Let me be clear that single-event sport wagering already exists in this country, and if members do not think so, they are behind the curtains. The Canadian single-event sport wagering industry is worth over $14 billion, but most of it, 95% of it, exists underground on the black market or through offshore websites. These are unregulated sport-wagering sites. None of that activity is subject to government regulations or taxes; none of it is creating jobs in this country or economic opportunities; and none of it is contributing to consumer protection, education, harm reduction initiatives or support services, which are badly needed in this country.
This legislation would amend the Criminal Code to repeal the federal ban on single-event sport betting and allow the provinces to implement a safe and regulated betting environment within the provincial wagering and lottery systems. By passing this bill, we can put a stop to the billions of dollars going to organized crime and put that money back into our communities.
To wrap up, it has all changed since 2018. The United States has allowed it. Sport leagues, like the NHL and NBA, are in favour of sports betting being regulated. It is time this country follows forward. I will have more to say on this bill, but it gives me great pleasure to stand in the House this morning and introduce it.
View Warren Steinley Profile
Madam Speaker, I listened with interest to the speech of my hon. colleague from Timmins—James Bay and appreciate some of his comments. He mentioned the middle class quite often in his speech and commented on the Minister of Middle Class Prosperity. He said there is not really a definition from our Liberal colleagues on what the middle class is.
Can the hon. member give me a definition of what the middle class is according to the NDP? What would the average income per household be? I would like to know if the New Democrats have a definition for what the middle class is within their platform.
View Kelly Block Profile
Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Alberta Court of Appeal ruled in a four-to-one decision that the legislation that brought in the federal carbon tax erodes the authority of the provinces, calling it “a constitutional Trojan horse.”
Our country is based on the rule of law and the division of powers. The Liberal government knew from the start that its carbon tax encroaches on the rights of the provinces, yet it passed it anyway. Not only is the carbon tax a cash grab scam that does nothing for the environment, charges a tax on a tax and cuts into the bottom line of Canadian businesses and households, but it is a power grab by the federal government.
The truth is Canadians are struggling to make ends meet under a government that opposes resource development, allows radical activists to ignore the law and charges a carbon tax on everything.
If the Liberals really cared about the Constitution and Canadians, they would scrap the carbon tax right now.
View Andrew Scheer Profile
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister was a teacher before he got elected, and he has taught protesters a valuable lesson. They can hold illegal blockades—
Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
View Andrew Scheer Profile
Mr. Speaker, we know he is a teacher, because we have all seen his picture in the yearbook.
We know that he has taught protesters a valuable lesson. They can bring our economy to its knees and they can hold illegal blockades, holding up our rail traffic leading to layoffs, and he will do absolutely nothing.
Does the Prime Minister realize that his weakness has caused the situation to spiral out of control?
View Andrew Scheer Profile
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's weakness has emboldened these protesters. It took him days before he would even call them illegal. In the first two weeks, he was telling police not to do their job and not to move in and remove them.
It is not just his weakness that is affecting the blockades, it is also affecting important investments in our energy sector. The Teck mine had its application approved by an independent regulator. It was sitting on the cabinet table for months, since July.
Why did the Prime Minister wait so long before making a decision on Teck Frontier?
View Andrew Scheer Profile
The minister does not seem to realize that he is part of the government that created the regime that forced Teck to pull out. It was the government's decision to wait months before making a final decision on Teck. It is not just his energy approvals process that is causing problems; it is also his signature policy, the carbon tax.
Yesterday, the Alberta Court of Appeal ruled, “We recognize there may well be those who favour ending further oil and gas development and even shutting down the entire oil and gas industry. Chief amongst them would be Alberta's foreign oil and gas competitors.”
Why is the Prime Minister doing the dirty work of Canada's foreign competition?
View Warren Steinley Profile
Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the hon. member for Calgary Shepard. I look forward to his comments.
I have listened intently to the speeches throughout the day in this esteemed chamber. I think everyone is very passionate about the motion brought forward by our hon. NDP colleagues.
The motion states:
That the House call on the government to change its proposed tax cuts by targeting benefits to those who earn less than $90,000 per year, and use those savings to invest in priorities that give real help to Canadians, including dental coverage for uninsured families making less than $90,000....
We can break this motion down into two parts. I agree, and I think most people in this House will agree, that we need to do more to serve the most vulnerable in our communities. I think all members have heard heartbreaking stories from their constituents. I have had constituents in my office talking about the difficulties they are facing related to dental care, health care or employment. There are a lot of important issues that we as members of the House of Commons should bring forward on behalf of our constituents. Therefore, I do not think we will hear very many people disagree with the need to have more means to help the most vulnerable in our ridings.
I am from Saskatchewan. I was an MLA in Saskatchewan for two terms and eight years. I have heard all the stories about Tommy Douglas. I know our NDP colleagues like to quote Tommy Douglas and talk about him bringing medicare forward. I believe it is one of the great advancements in Canadian history and he should be applauded for that, but he was also a very fiscally conservative individual. There are other quotes here that Mr. Douglas has often said that our hon. colleagues from the NDP do not attribute to him, but I would like to bring one forward. At one point in time, Mr. Douglas stated that if governments do not get out of debt, the decisions are made by the ones who lend the money. In other words, he was saying that, as a government, we need to have balanced budgets. That is something Mr. Douglas took very seriously, because if not, we are giving up some of our sovereignty and some of our ability to make decisions. Bringing forward public health care was very important, but he was also fiscally responsible. An NDP premier is not one of the first people I thought I would be quoting in this House. I hope my colleagues will forgive me. It is important to be fiscally responsible, because then we are able to make better decisions.
Another thing Mr. Douglas knew is we need to have a strong economy. If there is no money there to spend, we cannot spend it on our most vulnerable. That is very much something that should be brought into this motion.
We have had some very disturbing decisions made over the last few days regarding our energy sector. I understand the commitment was $5.6 billion if fully implemented. However, over the last few years we have forgone $120 billion worth of investment into our oil and gas sector, which would have paid for programs for the most vulnerable, for public schools and for public health care. I find it very alarming, to say the least, that we have a motion brought forward by opposition members talking about the need to spend money, and on the other side we have the same people trying to ensure that projects do not go forward that would pay for these programs. At some point in time, that bill has to be paid.
Two days ago, Teck Frontier withdrew its project worth $20 billion. We saw Enbridge withdraw the northern gateway project worth $7.9 billion. We saw the TransCanada Corporation withdraw the energy east project worth $16 billion. We saw Petronas withdraw the Pacific Northwest LNG project worth $36 billion. We saw Aurora LNG withdraw its project worth $28 billion. We saw Prince Rupert LNG withdraw its project worth $16 billion. We saw ExxonMobil withdraw its WCC LNG project worth $25 billion. It is unbelievable.
What all these have in common is that they are all private companies that wanted to invest their shareholder dollars, not public dollars. It is private dollars that they wanted to invest. When those projects go forward, they help pay for some of the programs that we want to have for our most vulnerable people.
Moving forward as a country, we need to understand that the pie is getting smaller. That means there is less for everyone. There are fewer ideas for people to bring forward programs for everyone. There is less opportunity. I have constituents who have very rare diseases that they want covered by the drug formulary. They cost a lot of money.
Where do we get the funds to pay for that? It is through private investment, through oil and gas companies, and through people investing in Canada because they have confidence that our economy is going to be strong. Right now, in the letter that was sent by Teck Frontier's CEO, that confidence to invest in our country is not there. That should be a worry for everyone in this chamber who wants to bring forward motions to spend more money on our most vulnerable, which I agree with. We need to ensure that we have the resources to do that.
I listened intently to my hon. colleague across the way. He was talking about the generic drug program. When I was an MLA, I am quite sure, coming out of the COF conference, the premiers conference, that Premier Ghiz and Premier Wall were commissioned to do a health report that brought forward the generic drug plan to make drugs more affordable for people across the country. I do not believe Premier Ghiz and Premier Wall were NDP premiers.
They were two premiers who got together and had some different philosophical ideas. They brought forward a report to ensure that cheaper generic drugs could be bought in bulk to benefit all Canadians. That is something we benefit from now.
Having people come together from different political stripes is a good thing and brings forward solutions. I am pretty happy that I was able to be a part of that. I learned a lot from Premier Wall. Working with partners is one thing that we learned as the government in Saskatchewan. I was part of the Saskatchewan Party government. That was a combination of Liberals and Conservatives in Saskatchewan coming together and forming a party to make sure that we would have good government.
I appreciate working together with people from across the aisle to bring forward good ideas, good policies and good programs, and to make sure we could be a better government for all Canadians. I believe that is why people sent us to this House.
When I think about this motion, I think about breaking it into two parts. I believe everyone in this chamber thinks that for the most vulnerable in our society, programs need to be in place to ensure that they have a better quality of life. I think everyone in this chamber would agree with that.
The other part is the financial aspect. How do we get there? Conservatives think we need to grow the pie, not just slice it up differently. We need to make the economic pie bigger. We need to ensure that we have more money and that our economy is growing so that we can bring forward these programs for all Canadians, making sure that there is a better quality of life for Canadians.
I believe that is something we need to have a very serious discussion about in this chamber going forward. I think that will happen after we are done these proceedings and are into the emergency debate. Is this a country that allows projects to be built? If it is not, then we need to have a discussion on how we are going to bring forward programs. It is going to be a more difficult discussion. There would be a much smaller pie for us to divide into programs that we want to see for our constituents.
I believe we were sent here to grow this country, to grow our economy and to make sure our children and the next generations have more benefits, more ability to have great jobs and a better quality of life than we had. Going forward, we need to have that conversation to ensure that our economy is growing. We need to make sure we have good discussions about this to ensure that we have good programs for the most vulnerable in our society and so that Canadians have a better quality of life going forward.
View Warren Steinley Profile
Mr. Speaker, unfortunately when we start talking about Liberal tax cuts, I do not believe any of the numbers the Liberals put forward. I have not had a conversation on what numbers are true and what numbers are not. It is very difficult for me on this side of the House. They brought forward a lot of small business tax changes two summers ago. They were going to try to ensure that small businesses were hampered and were unable to do better business. When we see these proposed tax cuts, I do not believe the numbers. The Liberals always leave some room for imagination.
On the second question, the programs we can put in place to ensure people have a higher quality of life is of course important. We need to ensure we are able to fund these programs on a go-forward basis and have the ability to ensure that people who need the coverage have it. I believe all members in this chamber would find this very important and we should have a conversation about it.
View Kevin Waugh Profile
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member for Regina—Lewvan for bringing up Tommy Douglas. Maybe some day he will be on the $5 bill. We never know.
I am of the age when our school systems provided dentists and optometrists who would come to the schools. Then all of a sudden, the budgets coast to coast were squeezed and they were no longer in the school. The NDP is right in some of this, that the most vulnerable do not have the choice. They do not have the funds for dentists, optometrists and so on.
I agree with the member for Regina—Lewvan. We need to create wealth in the country to give our social programs the love they need right now, and we have not seen it under the Liberal government .
View Warren Steinley Profile
Mr. Speaker, although my colleague from Saskatoon—Grasswood and I are not of the same vintage, when I was in elementary school, for the first couple of years dentists would come in and check our teeth. However, because the provincial government was so far in debt, those programs were taken away. I remember getting the fluoride treatments and being checked.
This an example of when the economy shrinks and the government does not have the money to run these programs, we lose them. I think that ties in very nicely with the point of my presentation, that we need a strong economy and we need to grow the economy so these services, once they are there, are not taken away.
View Warren Steinley Profile
Madam Speaker, I am so excited my colleague said that we had blinders on with respect to our economy. He and his colleagues across the way have been bringing up numbers that just do not add up.
Canada's unemployment is higher than the G7 average and higher than the U.K., Germany and Japan. Growth is flat. The United States outgrew Canada in the last three or four years by 50%. Incomes are stalled. Since the Liberals came to office, middle-class incomes have been flat, rising $35 a year compared to $450 under the years of the Stephen Harper government. People are coming up short. Poor incomes and rising costs have driven insolvency rates to 10-year highs. There are more people going bankrupt in Canada than ever before. We do—
View Warren Steinley Profile
View Warren Steinley Profile
2020-02-25 19:09 [p.1556]
Madam Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I believe the hon. minister made a mistake by unintentionally saying that the Notley government brought forward the carbon levies targeted toward major industrial emitters in the 1990s. Obviously it was a government long before she was in power. If he could correct the record on that, I would appreciate it very much.
View Warren Steinley Profile
View Warren Steinley Profile
2020-02-25 22:31 [p.1586]
Madam Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the hon. member for St. Albert—Edmonton. I am looking forward to hearing his comments on this as well.
A lot of my colleagues have spoken very eloquently in this emergency debate, brought forward by the member for Lakeland in her passion for her constituency. I am proud to be able to speak along with her about the crisis that is happening in western Canada within our energy sector right now.
I have been here since 11 o'clock this morning and I have heard many speeches regarding the opposition motion. We can tie a lot of these together. I will touch on some of the words that our Liberal colleagues have said throughout the day.
I also want to talk from the perspective of my constituency, my colleagues, my friends and my family. A lot of people who are very close to me work in the energy sector. One of my best friends worked in the energy sector during his time at university. He was a roughneck. He was a rig hand. Now he is an anesthesiologist. People do leave the oil field and get different careers. That should be their choice, not the choice of a select few elite who think their jobs are not worth having anymore.
I have heard that a lot in the chamber today. There is a group of people within the chamber who think they should have the say as to whether oil and gas workers, hard-working men and women, deserve to keep their jobs. That is not right. They are one of the most innovative groups of people in our country. They work hard to ensure that what they do is cleaner, greener and better than any other country in the world. To have a group of people in this chamber say they are not good enough is absolutely ridiculous. Those members should all take a long look in the mirror when they get home.
Standing up for our constituents is what we should be doing. I am not sure if they are doing that. I am not sure if they sent out householders or surveys on whether their constituents are against Canadian oil and gas. I have been in the chamber for only three months, but I was an MLA for eight years. Canadians would prefer to have Canadian gas going into their gas tanks. Whether in the Maritimes or in B.C., Canadians would prefer to have Canadian energy heating their homes.
That is what this emergency debate is about. It is about whether we think Canada should be a country of yes: yes we can build a project, yes we believe in our energy sector and yes we believe in the hard-working men and women who work in our oil and gas sector. We think they have the right to try to make their companies cleaner and greener. I believe they deserve to have that chance and not be phased out by people in this chamber.
I have heard a lot of people quoting, cherry-picking quotes from the Teck CEO's letter. My hon. colleagues do not seem to be reading the whole letter. I will quote from that letter:
We are disappointed to have arrived at this point. Teck put forward a socially and environmentally responsible project that was industry leading and had the potential to create significant economic benefits for Canadians. Frontier has unprecedented support from the indigenous communities and was deemed to be in the public interest by a joint federal-provincial review panel following weeks of public hearings and a lengthy regulatory process. Since the original application in 2011, we have, as others in the industry have done, continued to optimize the project to further confirm [its commercial viability].
I have heard comments about the spot price of oil and West Texas Intermediate right now. It is $50 a barrel. That is true. I understand businesses are still going in the oil sands in Alberta. Syncrude is still operational. It is weird. A company can still make money at this price.
For opposition members to now be captains of industry and talk about energy products and say it could not be done for commercial viability is not true. If the government had been able to approve that project and let that company make the choice after the project was approved, it would have been an interesting position. If the government gave the project the go-ahead three weeks ago, would it have agreed that the project may have continued to be implemented in Alberta?
Do not take my word for it that this was a political decision. Lorne Gunter published a great article a couple of days ago:
The fault is clearly with the [Prime Minister's] government's entirely spineless response to blockades across the country.
I will quote the article:
Make no mistake, the end of Teck Resources’ Frontier oilsands mine is [the Prime Minister's] fault—plainly, clearly, unequivocally.
The project’s cancellation also means the radical fringe is in charge of Canada, not the government, the courts or the police.
Teck’s decision, announced Sunday, will also have far-reaching effects on the entire Canadian economy, not just the energy sector.
There is no doubt this is [the Prime Minister's] fault.
The article went on to say:
[The Prime Minister] showed he wasn’t interested in being in charge when, last Tuesday, he said the answer to the lawless at the blockades was more touchy-feely consultation and listening.
He ends the article:
Don’t ask a federal Liberal MP or cabinet minister what Canada’s First Nations policies are. Don’t even ask the majority of Indigenous Canadians who want to improve their communities by participating in projects such as Teck Frontier and Coastal GasLink.
Go ask the unelected, unaccountable radicals at the blockades, because they’re in charge now.
Is that the country we are going to live in? I have three young children, ages six, four and three. Is that the country we want to pass on to the next generation where there is no rule of law? Is this not the place where we make decisions? Is this not the place where we want to make sure big, nation-building projects can be built?
I have heard almost every left-wing falsehood this evening, including the Victoria MP saying we have to be cleaner while Victoria dumps 100,000 litres of raw sewage in the ocean every year. Thanks for that. Maybe the MPs should clean up their own backyard first before talking about what we should do in western Canada, in Saskatchewan and Alberta. That would be a good start.
I want to talk about some of my constituents and some of the hard-working people who put pipes in the ground: the people who work at Evraz and the people who want to go to work. When I was door-knocking, I talked with Wade on his doorstep. It was snowing so I did not see it at first, but he pointed to the “for sale” sign on his front yard. He told me he had not worked for 18 months and could not afford his house anymore. His wife just left him, so he could not afford the payments.
These are real Canadians who are having difficult times. It is incumbent upon the government to support all of Canada. The crux of the motion is that we should have had this conversation when this happened in the automobile and aerospace sectors because those jobs are as important as the jobs in western Canadian provinces. They are as important as our oil and gas sector. We have had those debates and we had comments from members saying maybe we should not have this debate. Maybe this is not a crisis and maybe this is not important.
I hear it being said about my constituents that maybe their jobs are not important and they have to get new jobs. There are 300,000 new clean jobs in this country. Can anyone name them? Probably not, because a lot of them are in the oil and gas sector, which are doing clean energy projects.
Before we had a group of people in this chamber saying our hard-working men and women in the oil and gas sector and in the construction sector are dangerous in small communities. They help build small communities. They are not dangerous people in those communities.
Before we have a group of men and women in this chamber saying the hard-working men and women in the oil and gas sector would not get the job done and have a cleaner energy sector, we should give them that chance before we phase them out. We are going to be here fighting for them, making sure they have that chance now and in the years to come.
View Warren Steinley Profile
View Warren Steinley Profile
2020-02-25 22:42 [p.1587]
Mr. Speaker, I absolutely am telling my children that the environment is a concern. We had a great environment plan that we won the popular vote with in the last election. I am happy to say that the environment is an important issue on this side of the House, but so is our energy sector. They go hand in hand.
I can say for certain I am teaching my children that, if they work hard and are hard-working men and women, they will have a chance to ensure that they can get a job in any of the sectors they want, because we will treat all the sectors in this country the same when we are in government.
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